Iraq: Exhumation works begin on mass grave site of Yazidi women in Sinjar

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The exhumation of the mass grave site related to atrocities committed by the Islamic State (IS; formerly ISIS/ISIL) against Yazidi women began in Sinjar district on Saturday.

It’s part of a wider investigation led by the United Nations Investigative Team to Promote Accountability for Crimes Committed by the Islamic State, the Directorate of Mass Graves of the Martyrs Foundation, and the International Commission on Missing Persons.

It is thought that the mass grave, located by the Solagh Technical Institute, contains the remains of elderly Yazidi women executed in 2014 as the victims were too old to be sold as sex slaves.

Members of the Yazidi community, survivors, mourners, officials, researchers, and others were seen present at the site with drone footage showing the area of the exhumation.

In an interview, Kaji, a survivor whose relatives were executed, said “I’m so full of sorrow, I remember the passion and kindness of my mother, who was actually my stepmother. She was 90 years old when they shot and buried her.”

Yazidis are an endogamous minority group, originating from Upper Mesopotamia, who follow the monotheistic religious practice known as Yazidism.

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